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Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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Two disability discrimination complaints no longer listed on education department website

Arielle Bader | Assistant Photo Editor

Two federal investigations into disability discrimination complaints were removed from the Department of Education website.

Two disability complaints, filed by the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights, were first listed on the Department of Education website on Feb. 7 and were removed from the website in April. Officials said one complaint was withdrawn, and the University was not notified about the status of the other unlisted complaint.

The first probe, filed under Academic Adjustments to Effective Communication, investigated whether GW denied an individual benefits because of their disability. The second complaint, filed under Free Appropriate Public Education to Treatment of Postsecondary Students, launched an investigation into whether officials retaliated against an individual for protesting disability discrimination.

University spokeswoman Maralee Csellar said one of the claimants “voluntarily” withdrew their complaint, and the University has not received an update on the status of the other case. She did not specify which complaint was withdrawn.

“The Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights is obligated to review all complaints it receives,” Csellar said in an email. “It may then close its review for any number of reasons, including because the complainant withdrew the complaint, the complaint is about matters outside of OCR’s jurisdiction, or that there is no violation.”

Last January, GW fell under federal investigation for disability discrimination based on the accessibility of University websites. GW began to create a plan last June to make GW websites more accessible for visually impaired individuals.

Ed Prestera contributed reporting.

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